Amazon acquired an inventory-management and fulfillment firm in November called Veeqo, as CNBC reported on Monday, March 7. Why would Amazon want to buy a solution that lets retailers control their warehouse management, inventory and shipping operations in one platform?
Amazon lives and breathes efficiency, but the merchants who sell on its marketplace may not be. Amazon could be looking for ways to boost the efficiency of its sellers, and by doing so, make its own operations more efficient and increase selection on its marketplace.
Veeqo’s venture capital firm Octopus Ventures made the autumn acquisition news public in a post on Monday. “At its core, Veeqo’s software helps small and medium sized online retailers efficiently manage and grow their multi-channel business with inventory, order, shipping, and warehouse management capabilities,” it said.
On the Veeqo website, it lists integration with Amazon as well as with eBay, Etsy, Shopify, BigCommerce, WooCommerce, Magento as well as shipping carriers, logistics firms, and others.
Amazon’s acquisition may also be recognition that it doesn’t need to have every merchant use its own FBA fulfillment service – as long as merchants can fulfill orders to customers quickly.
Octopus Ventures had led a £3.3 million growth investment in Veeqo in March of 2019 – but there was no mention of how much Amazon paid to acquire Veeqo in November.
An Amazon spokeswoman confirmed the acquisition to CNBC but declined to disclose the terms, telling the financial publication:
“We’re excited Veeqo has joined Amazon. We plan to continue investing in new features and improvements to help Veeqo serve sellers globally from its home in Wales, facilitate growth for sellers’ multichannel businesses and enhance the experience of their customers.”
Juozas Kaziukėnas of Marketplace Pulse tweeted the news, writing, “Is this a hint of Amazon’s approach to “compete” with Shopify – turn its warehouses into a AWS-like service? (They are that in theory already but seldom used).”
A person replying to the tweet pointed out that Amazon may gain access to third-party seller data through the acquisition.
A spokesperson from Amazon told EcommerceBytes the company plans to continue investing in new features and improvements to help Veeqo serve sellers globally and facilitate growth for sellers’ multi-channel businesses and also provided the following statement: “Amazon takes confidentiality and security seriously. Veeqo’s seller information is secured against inappropriate loss, access, or disclosure. Veeqo’s seller information can only be accessed by Amazon to the extent necessary to provide and improve Veeqo’s services or to assess and manage logistics provider performance.”
Updated 3/8/2022 for clarity and to add Amazon statement.